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Introducing Christian Doctrine(2nd Edition) Hardcover – April 1, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

This abridgment of Erickson's classic Christian Theology gives an overview of the doctrines of revelation, God, creation, providence, humanity, sin, Jesus Christ, atonement and salvation, the church, and eschatology. Erickson's careful theological reflection is here made accessible to any serious reader.

"Clearly written and well-outlined, this book would serve as an excellent college textbook as well as being accessible to educated laypersons."--Warren McWilliams, Religious Studies Review

"This is an outstanding introduction to theology that should become a standard undergraduate textbook. It's accessible to all general readers, and I strongly recommend it to all bookstores."--John Kohlenberger III, Bookstore Journal

"Unhesitatingly recommended for use in Christian colleges."--Robert A. Pyne and Gary L. Nebeker, Bibliotheca Sacra

"This prominent publication is most worthy of serious study."--The Baptist Standard

"Erickson's goal was to write a briefer version of his popular Christian Theology--with a view to providing a primer of and transition to more extended discussions of theology. As such, Erickson admirably achieved his purposes."--B. Dale Ellenburg, Mid-America Theological Journal

About the Author

Millard J. Erickson is Distinguished Professor of Theology at Truett Seminary and at Western Seminary, Portland. He is the author of numerous works, including Christian Theology, God in Three Persons, and The Word Became Flesh.

L. Arnold Hustad
is professor of theology and philosophy at Crown College, St. Bonifacius, Minnesota.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Baker Academic; 2 edition (April 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801022509
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801022500
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 7.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #40,075 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Millard J. Erickson (B.A., University of Minnesota, B.D., Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, M.A., University of Chicago, Ph.D., Northwestern University) has taught theology at several evangelical seminaries. He has written over twenty-five books and numerous articles. He and his wife, Virginia, have three daughters and live in Mounds View, Minnesota.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By E. Johnson on January 3, 2002
Format: Hardcover
My seminary diploma from Bethel has Erickson's signature on it (when he was there back in the 1980's), so I am familiar with this man's work. I studied theology using his Christian Theology text (it was 3 volumes at the time). I love what he has done in this second edition volume of Introducing Christian Doctrine, as he was able to condense his material to fit into 400 pages. He admits in his preface that it was his editor who is reponsible for being able to chop down his work in such a radical way, and I fully understand that the hardest task for a writer to do is to edit down his own work. Anyway, it worked.
We are using this text for the first time in our private Christian high school's junior and senior Bible classes. Some students appear to be a little lost, but many are welcoming the challenge to clearer thinking. The book is not "Theology Light," as another reviewer seemed to suggest, so please don't approach it as "easy." Good systematic theology takes lots of work, plenty of wrestling with scripture, and many restless nights. But I like the fact that this text is a softer approach (without a complete "dumbing down" of the material) for first-time theology students. (I'd be happy to let anyone know the results by the end of 2002 when we will complete this text.) Also, I like about Erickson's attitude is that, while he certainly has presuppositions, he attempts to fairly lay out the possibilities on issues that certainly divide Christians into separate camps. He gives his opinion, but he doesn't treat it as if anyone who disagrees is a heretic. All in all, Erickson's work gets a thumbs up for those who want an overview on the basic teachings of Christianity.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Doug Erlandson TOP 100 REVIEWER on February 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover
"Introducing Christian Doctrine" is a good and for the most part well-balanced introductory-level textbook in systematic theology. I have used it for that purpose and have found that it gives students a decent overview of the main issues. Because its purpose is not to provide an in-depth discussion of Christian doctrines it does not cover any doctrines in great detail. As a result, there are some unavoidable oversimplifications, which, given the intended level of discussion, is not a major drawback. However, someone using it as a textbook will need to make the students aware of these oversimplifications.

There are a few places where Erickson's presentation is unnecessarily biased. For example, in his discussion of baptism he dismisses in one short paragraph the view (based on Colossians 2:11) that baptism is the NT equivalent to the OT sacrament of circumcision and therefore should be applied to believers and their children. Whether one holds this view or not, a more careful discussion of it is in order, even in an introductory text. (This is just one of several problems I found in what he says about the sacraments.)

His discussion of general eschatology is probably the weakest section of the book. I found myself constantly disagreeing with what he said. Some of his comments are simply wrongheaded. For example, on p. 398 he says that postmillennialists hold "that the millennium involves an earthly reign of Christ." This left me scratching my head, seeing that by definition postmillennialists believe that Christ will not return until after the millennium.

Once again, on the whole this is a good basic introduction. However, the reader needs to be aware that not everything is stated as accurately as it should be.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Michael Pope on April 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I have been a Christian for a long while, and thought I knew all the basics (the "milk" as Paul describes). After studying this volume, I found there were a few points with which I was not as familiar as I previously thought. It serves as a great intro into basic Christian theology by covering the main doctrines without getting too deep or techincal. I could see this as a good text for neophyte young Christians or long-time believers who want a solid refresher. One word to the wise: Don't skip over the first two chapters covering the definition of theology and revelation. They may appear tedious and unnecessary, but they are important components for the rest of the doctrines discussed.

If you are worried about a specific denomination or slant, don't be. Erickson is obviously evangelistic (which I appreciate), and his arguments sometimes border on "mildly Calvinistic", but he does a good job representing all sides of the issues. As far as I can tell, his points are solidly backed by a conservative rendering of Scripture. At any rate, most people will not find a single theology text that they totally agree with.

If you want to go "back to the basics", then this is the book for you.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Willys Wrencher on May 5, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"Introduction to Christian Doctrine" is a great quick reference book for theology for anyone interested in brief understandings of the major views on major subjects with the authors input on which best fits the Scriptures.

Today many people are ignorant concerning any doctrinal position other than their own. In light of that fact it is important for Christians to understand other views than those they are accustomed to.

As Charles Finney noted:

"My brother, sister, friend--read, study, think, and read again. You were made to think. It will do you good to think; to develop your powers by study. God designed that religion should require thought intense thought, and should thoroughly develop our powers of thought. The Bible itself is written in a style so condensed as to require much intense study. Many know nothing of the Bible or of religion, because they will not think and study."

This book will help give you concise descriptions of major views of theology and assist you in reflecting on them.

I rate this book as 4 Starts because the author leans toward Calvinism while the book was supposed to be more of a neutral approach.
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